WASHINGTON (WEHT)– A local Toyota employee was honored at a ceremony in Washington, D.C. on April 28. Jenny Bartley and two other Toyota employees were honored by the Manufacturing Institute (MI) with STEP Ahead Awards.

Group Manager of Assembly Jenny Bartley was named an honoree by MI and at the STEP Ahead Awards. Bartley is a native of Gibson County and leads a production team of over 1,000 and serves as a one-on-one mentor for women in the manufacturing industry.

“As president of Toyota Indiana, I have watched Jenny grow in her career and responsibilities,” said President of Toyota Manufacturing Indiana and previous STEP Ahead award winner Leah Curry. “I could not be more excited to see her receive this national recognition from her peers in the industry and I am proud to have her as a part of our Toyota Indiana family.”

The three Toyota winners, including one emerging leader and two honorees, are:

  • Haley Antoine, Engineer – Vehicle Mobility & Engineering, Toyota Motor North America R&D, Michigan (Emerging Leader).
  • Jenny Bartley, Group Manager – Toyota Motor Manufacturing Indiana (Honoree).
  • Earnée Gilling, Group Manager – Technical Strategy and Planning Office, Toyota Motor North America R&D, Michigan (Honoree).

These exceptional women join a group of 23 Toyota employees who have previously received this prestigious honor.

“We are so proud of these three exceptional women from across our U.S. operations. At Toyota, we aim to empower everyone to achieve their highest potential and inspire the next generation of leaders,” said Curry.

The STEP Ahead Awards honor female leaders in science, technology, engineering and production careers for their excellence and outstanding leadership. MI recognizes 100 peer-nominated honorees and 30 emerging leaders each year. The 2022 honorees and emerging leaders come from 97 companies and represent all levels and the diversity of careers in manufacturing. 

“The STEP Ahead Awards are central to the industry’s efforts to recognize and empower women,” said MI President, Carolyn Lee. “Our honorees and emerging leaders serve as role models and have their own multiplier effect on the number of women in the workforce, paying it forward to help others find their way into a successful, rewarding career in modern manufacturing.”

This year the STEP Ahead Awards celebrates 10 years of accomplishments. The awards are part of the larger STEP Ahead Initiative.

The initiative was launched in 2012 to honor and promote the role of women in the manufacturing industry through recognition, research and leadership. More than 1,000 women have been recognized to date.